Andrew Lawton talks about his book on the occupation of Ottawa, what the media got wrong, and how to reach people beholden to conspiracy theories.
It's refreshing to see both of you having this conversation. Thanks to you both
I am the opposite of a Convoy supporter, but that was a great interview from both sides. Mr. Lawton made some good points and had interesting insights. Justin, you also pressed him when required.
It's unfortunate that Chapters won't stock the book. I work at a library and made sure we ordered it for our collection. Or maybe that's more of a little dig at Ken Whyte, who can say?
This was a lot of fun. Thanks for the opportunity, Justin!
Thank You this is what has been missing. This is true journalism, all points of view submitted so readers can think and reach their own conclusions. Thank you both again
What a great interview! Many thanks to both of you. One of the aspects of all this that I find concerning is the degree to which the many conspiracy theories that were part of the convoy protests have radicalized people I know who don't have the tools that both of you have to discriminate between possible bullshit and reasonable argument. Lack of critical thinking skills makes people gullible to manipulation. That's not to say that people who ought to be able to use their judgement always do so-- emotion drives reaction on the left as well as on the right. Both of you make a point of acknowledging that.
Research shows the far right exploited COVID to normalize its own agenda. And the "freedom convoy" had little to do with COVID vaccines since a) the trucking industry pointed out 90% of their drivers were vaccinated and wanted nothing to do with the convoy and b) most of the rules to protect us were relaxed by the time these people decided to roll into Ottawa (mostly in single family vehicles) with a few rented big rigs thrown in to make it look like it had anything to do with truckers. https://theconversation.com/coronavirus-and-conspiracies-how-the-far-right-is-exploiting-the-pandemic-145968
A best seller relative to what? 68% of Canadians do not support the Convoy and here's a question for the antivaxxer crowd whose tent includes far right bigots, racists, and misogynists: on what planet can you claim you're financially hard up when you can afford to drive hundreds of miles to occupy a city idling your trucks and honking your horns for two months? Did you think peeing on the war memorial was a good look and would get you sympathizers? Do you honestly think Canadians would join a movement whose tent includes neoNazis? It's nice of Justin to give you the benefit of the doubt but it's your behaviour and language I judge. I recognize what you are. And True North is not journalism any more than Fox News is.
Freedumb Convoy: July edition.
"Expect reaction today to Freedom Convoy live-streamer from Ottawa who last night streamed himself with a US flag draped on the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier. The stream was screen-capped by an American supporter." - Glen McGregor
One of the lessons of the 20th Century was that weaponizing individual trauma and disaffection, into a mass movement, to gain power works. It is vile. That's the part we are supposed to never forget.
A heads up on the convoy's next move. Crashing the Pope's visits with Indigenous people. I mean... being godawful seems to be their mission statement.
A civil conversation, not completely unproductive. One factoid I wish could be produced is the Venn Diagram slice of that group that are not COVID-deniers, not vaccine-deniers, only mandate-haters.
Layton may be in that group himself. Or not. Fully vaccinated, but does he *believe* in the science that got everybody else do do so? And if he does, what's the objection to the vaccine mandate? For the first variants, it was 66% reduction in your odds of infection, 50% reduction in your odds of then transmitting it if you were. I really believe that 99% of them denied the risk-reduction itself.
He also said it was maybe "illegal", though there have been vaccine mandates generations ago, all upheld in court, and the current ones survived court challenges. Justin did pound on the business of them thinking the whole government was now criminal, but that's the core of it: that settled court challenges just didn't exist. Why ignore them?
Interviewers focused on the extent to which they were confederate-sympathizers or whatever, but I would drill down on separating only-anti-mandate from actually-anti-vaccine. I consider vaccine skepticism to be right up there with confederate flag flying - it's gotten more Americans killed than their Civil War, after all. (America had 3X our casualty rate, indeed 7X our rate for those under-50; so I blame at least 2/3rds of their deaths on cultural failure to respect medicine - so, about 700,000.)
Prove me wrong, Andrew. Bring us ten pro-vaccine, but anti-mandate, protesters for a round table. But you can't find ten.